What I'm reading

Sorcery songs to kill Hanson

gurindji-journeyContinuing the Japan–Australia theme, I’m re-reading Minoru Hokari’s Gurindji Journey, ahead of the event To celebrate the life and work of Minoru Hokari 1971-2004 at the ANU.

I especially love Hokari’s radically pluralist approach to oral history and his persuasive but uncomfortable demand that “we need to question the politics of this act of ‘rescuing and being respectful of’ the Aboriginal experience.”

But quite apart from all that, here’s a fun excerpt (p85):

When I told them that Japanese ‘law’ became more Westernised, they sympathised with me and said, ‘Kartiya way everywhere.’ My Asian background certainly created a particular dynamic between the Gurindji people and me. Here is another example: one day, a young man approached me and asked if I knew Pauline Hanson. He explained that she does not like ‘my mob’ and ‘your mob’. Then, he suggested that I sing sorcery songs with him to kill Hanson.

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